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next on msnbc suay is, freedom in the offing? a new promise for the release of an american jailed for more than a year. more discoveries in the wake that california gas blast. also, ahead, foot fight frenzy. what started out as a spat ended so horribly. plus, holding out hope in the checkout line. why this week could provide clues about our economic future. good morning, everyone. i'm alex witt. just past 9:00 a.m. on the eale coast. let's get to what's happening right now. we are following breaking news out of iran at this hour. a jailed american hiker held for over 13 months by authorities may be released within days. sarah shourd could soon come home on $500,000 bail. al little arouzi, a g sunday morning to you. what facilitated this about face for iran. >> it's very strange. firstly we had no indications up until a few days ago any of them
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would bereleased. all of f a sudden this about fa she's going to be released. there's been a loist of the confusion over this. the president's office said she was mane to be released yesterday, that the president had personally intervenes. then the chief prosecutor overruled is it the president which is very ebarrassing for him which highlights the rifts and divisions within the ruling conservative party in iran right now. th-- sarah's lawyer said he had seen her today and he was confident she would be released in the next few days after the bail had been paid. >> okay. i know that sarah's mom says she has serious health problems. would she be home for good or perhaps have to return to iran for a trial? >> the prosecutor is very clear this is a bail and she stillac s to face a court and go to trial as her two friends are going to have to go to court, as well. he's been very clear about the fact that the two boys that are still in jail in iran are going
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to go to court. now, obviously, if she doesn't show up for the court case, it's going to affect ybthem. t everybody else in iran who's been taken to jail, been given a very heavy bail or the deed to their house taken and once they've left ir have never set foot back into the countryo . it's going to be interesting to see how this plays out. there's a lot of pressure on the two boys and their fate still hangs in the balance. >> what a story. ali arouzi, thank you from london. police in san bruno confirm three more deaths in that massive gas line explosion bringing the total now to seven. crews are still searching the charred disaster area as a record six are still missing. while survivors know they're lucky to be alive, many are frustrated by their uncerta fu future. >> well, we want to know what will happen after tthis. you know, are, they going to rebuild our house? i want to have a home for my
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family. >> miguel almaguer has more. with a good morning to you. what do you know about the remains that have been discovered by crews? were they all in one house or elsewhere? >> police have not given us very many details about what they have found and where they have found it. as you know, there was the epicenter up on the hill about a mile and a half from where we're standing here. there was so much damage csed by the blast, investigators are trying to determine who the dead are. they've certainly identified to us three of the dead. but we know there are seven total. we're also told some six premium miss. it's been three days since the blast and there is still confusio after the blast and today still some uncertainty and a few hours here, we're expecting a news conferenceer t happen right here at this location and potentially ge an update on the number of victims and how many people investigators are still lookingo for. >> let's look for good news here. how about people being able to return to their homes to visit them and retrieve rebelongings?
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>> there's several hundred people still evacuated. the houses have been labelled in three different categories, green, yellow and red. greens folks will be able to return to their homes, take belongings and live there. those who live in yellow tag homes, about a dozen or so, folks will be able to go into their homes for a short t amoun of time and have to re-evacuate out. those are the red tag are extremely close to the center of the blast. those are the folks that will not be able to return. they're going to lay out those plans later this morning and figure out who can go back d who cannot. >> thank you for the update. six people are dead after a shooting rampage in kentucky that apparently started because the gunman did not like the way his breakfast was prepared. a state trooper says 47-year-old stanley neace killed five people in two homes yesterday before turning theun on himself. a relative of two of the victims says witnses told her that neace went into a rage over hi breakfast and when his wife fled
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to a neighbor's trailer, he followed. >> seen him chasing his wife around the jeep shooting at her. begging and pleading with him saying we can work this out. the next thing i know he said i'll work it out and boom, boom, box, and everything got real quiet. >> he killed his wife and step daughter along with three witnesses and killed himself as police arrived on the scene about an hour later. those 33 miners trapped underground in chile will soon be getting cigarettes. and that is because health officials are now giving them permission to smoke ntilation system has improved y'll be able to lightly up occasionally while they wait to be rescued. that effort has suffered a setback this weekend. crews are currently drilling two separate rescue shafts but the drill head for one of the shafts has broken.o engineers are trying to find it, but if they don't, they may have to completely start drilling. a new shaft. a third more powerful drill is currently being assembled but not due to begin working for at least another week. the miners have been trapped
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since august 5th. president obama is zeroing in on the midterm with a sharp new message for the economy to drivhome the same focus he raised and echoed during a news conference on friday. >> middle class, middle css, middle class families, middle class families. middle class tax lief. middle class tax cut. middle class, middle class milies. middle class families climb into the middle class. >> mike viqueira is live at the white house. i want to take a shot in the dark here. sounds like the president's focused on the middle >>class? >> right. you mention that tomorrow he's goining to be going to virginia sitting at a family's kitchen table, talk about kitchen table issues, household budgets, things of that that nature and trying to highlight the efforts the president has made over the last 18 mountains to get the economy back on track but it all happens in a potical context where democrats, the president's party, of course, in serious trouble, and this is the curtain
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week now on the campaign season. we saw the president kick it off last monday, labor day, at tha rally in milwaukee where he gave that political stemwinder of a speech taking republicans to tack, by all accounts, experts say the republicans have a chance of winning a majority in the house, a better than even chance and perhaps can even win in the senate. we've seen the president now focusing on the economy. and the curtain coming up here as congress returns after a long august break. here it is the second week after labor day. and they're coming back only for about four weeks before they go back out on the campaign trail with so much at stake for them. but what's on the table? middle class tax cuts. the president has said he wants to extend those bush era tax cuts for everyone except couples making more than $250,000 a year, individuals at $200,000. a year. republicans and some democrats have said we want them extended for everyone. any kind of tax hike or raising taxes or letting them expire,
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will result in a loss of jobs and a drag on the economy. that is going to be the big fight over the course of the next coming weeks. then it's back out. we can expect to see the president campaigning from now till november 2nd, alex. >> let's hope there's a fight, a focus and something comes to fruition for all the beleaguered americans. mike, thanks so much. new signs today that rahm emanuel is indeed weighing a potential bid for mayor of chicago. a source tells nbc station wmaq he is testing the water by polling local voters. the survey is gauging how the former congressman stacks up against other likely candidates and how voters judge his relationship with the president. this season's fourth hurricane is swirling out in the atlantic and it's now picking up steam. hurricane or is expected to build to a major storm by late monday. let's get the complete sunday forecast. and do that, we go to the weather channel's jeff morrow. good morning. >> good morning, alex. we have three systems out here
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we're watching. igor is right in the middle of your screen. we also have the hurricane center saying there's a disturbance in the caribbean that has a 50% chance of developing. an aircraft will head out there later today. we have a 100% chance of another wave coming off the african coast developing. i think that's going to be a tropical depression. it would be julia. let's concentrate on hurricane igor. right now, category 1. 80 mile-an-hour maximum sustained winds. that's got well developed eye. i think the hurricane center is going to bump this up to a category 2 coming up shortly. i think eventually it's going to strengthen even more than that, probably getting up to major category 3 strength by monday or at the latest on tuesday and maybe winds up to 130 miles hour. we will think it will stay north of the windward islands. whether it affects the east coast of the u.s. or ber mewda, too early to call. the latest indications it might
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stay off the east coast. that would be good ws definitely. onhis grandparents day, our forecast, most of the country enjoying nice weather. up the eastern seaboinard includinin new york city, expect a little bit of light rain today. >> it's good forhe plants i s. guess. thank you very much, jeff morrow. protesters in afghanistan apparently didn't get the word about the pastor canceling the koran burning. the ater the uproar over proposed islamic center for manhattan. we'll discuss it on msnbc sunday. [ mom ] game time is all about the traditions. it's all about the tackles and the touchdowns. and watching my boys do what they do. but for me, it's even more than that. game time is about our time. together. [ female announcer ] get low prices on all your favorites for the game.
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new york's skyline was lit upast night to commemorate 9/11 with the annual tribute in lights. a pair of blue beams
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symbolizeding the twin towers illuminated the sky over manhattan. they had to be turned off for about 30 minutes after a thousand confused birdses flew into the powerful lights. the empire state building had the top of the skyscraper lit up in red, white, and blue. even though that flori pastor abandoned his plans to burn a koran on september 11th, anti-american protests turned dely today in afghanistan. an official says two protters died after they were shot. nbc's tom aspell is live in kabul. this is the third straight day of protests there. what's happening now? >> reporter: alex, protests over scattered areas of afghanistan, but this incident took place in the northeastern corner in logar provce. according to military officials there, about 100 people tried to march on the governor's house in the capital of logar province.e
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seven people. two peopleied of their wounds there. now, as you mentioned, it's tht third straight day that protesters have bet talking about a desecration of the koran in the united states. but officials are now worried that if those protests continue, they may bleed into the last-minute election earring going towards saturday's parliamentary elections here and one u.n. officials has been quoted as saying there's a possibility the elections may have to be delayed if the disturb bans spread through other parts of afghanistan. >> i'm curious. you've clearly gotten worried about the florida pastor canceling the burning. has that word gotten out in community? >> certainly here in kabul, people know the pastor changed his mind. probably in the country, people have not heard that. they depend for their news a lot on what the imam's say in the mosques, what people are saying in the street. a lot of people think even
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though one person has said they will burn a koran, there is a possibility other people will go on with what they see as a desecration here. any suggestion of insult towards their religious or suggestion of desecration, that's something they won't stand for. in the past, there have been at least 15 deaths in 2005, 2006 when people saw insults to islam over the koran and indeed about those danish cartoons about the prophet mohammed. >> that was a very trying time. thank you very much, tom aspell. new data on u.s. povery is due out next week. experts say the numbers do n look good. during the height of the recession in 2009, stipulates show the number of people living in poverty may have spiked from 13 to 15% adding up to around 45 million or one in seven americans. child poverty may be above 20%. if the estimates hold true, it would be the highest single payer year spike since
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recordkeeping began back in 1959. some new numbers on retail sales are expected be released on tuesday. some predict all of those sales and discounts may have worked to lure spoper shoppers putting retailers in the black for the month of august. could a gain in sales be a sign the economy is expanding? joining me now, neil irwin. good morning to you. >> morning, alex. >> ifre indeed these sales are , that would be for the second month, right? retailers saw that 4% rise in july. so is it fair to say we've gotten good economic news here? >> i think so. the data we've seen has been a little stronger. it's a glass half full, glass half empty kind of situation. the good side of this is we're not having a double dip recession and don't seem be sliding back into economic retraction. the pace of growth is still pretty slow even as we see some of these other numbers start to rise. >> how about the latest report on the wholesale inventories?
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sales are up. do you think this suggests the economy is rebounding better than people thought? >> certainly better than some the pessimists were thinking a few weeks ago. we've seen the number of jobless claims fell a good bit last week. we've seen decent jobs number. we're getting to the point where we're in a not a great recovery story but we are in an expansion nonetheless even though it' not very stronging. >> people have not been spending for so long. do you think people are tired that hs ave? >> absolutely. there's a catchup effect where it's not just that - psychological. maybe you delayed buying a car but eventually you need a new car. we're seeing that kind of action as people feel moreth confidentn the future. >> how about the president having talked about the econom on friday? let's talk about the new stimulus ideas out there. how are they going to help or will they help? are they enough? >> i'll tell you, the kind of reaction we saw in washington lasteek to the president's proposals, one of them is a research and development tax
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credit for businesses. you know, it was not -- even the natural allies for this sort of thing, the business community was not wildly enthusiastic. even democrats were not terribly behind it. the idea we'll see something pass and become enacted into law is pretty law. it's not clear tt the benefits arend massive. it's the kind of thing that might create a little extra growth, a few extra points in the near term but not anything that changes the ball game in terms of the economy. verymuch, in thanks v from the "washington post." shock and appall. it was a surprise to the eyes of high school students at an assembly. what was it that forced the school to send home apology letters? we're going to show you here on msnbc sunday. ♪
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assembly. officials say a speaker from the local blood bank was giving a presentation when it took that turn. the man had apparently stored pornography on the same flash drive where he kept information about donating blood. students were stunned and parents outraged. >> and then everybody looked up and sa it and the principal saw it, and they went up immediately and tried stopping it. >> wow. and by thattime, you guys had already seen evit. >> by that time everybody seen it. >> i think he should be punished and punished to the fullest. >> the school sent home an apology letter and the worker has been suspended indefinitely. so now to somhing that's a real hoot. check out this musician in london who plays an organ consisting of 16 squeaky toy cats. prince charles certainly loved it. he and camilla caught this act at a festival that left him in stitches. that organ player may have gotten bigger laughs than a comedian performing at the event. good to see prince charles being jolly there. we'll be right back. my name is vonetta, and i suffer from allergies.
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call or click now for an agent or quote. it's msnbc sunday. i'm alex witt. here are your fast five headlines. a senior iranian prosecuto now says american sarah shourd will be ee to leave the country if she can make the half million dollar bail. her attorney hopes shourd will be freed in two or three days. in san bruno, california, the death toll from that gas line explosion now up to seven. police say they still cannot account for six other people. in boulder, colorado, firefighters think they may have that huge wildfire fully contained by tomorrow night. the blaise has destroyed at least 169 homes. hurricane igor is getting stronger, and by tomorrow night, forecasters believe it could become a major hurricane. right now it's about 1200 miles east of the leewards and already
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has sustained winds topping 80 miles an hour. and back overseas, european police used tear gas to break up fighting between albanians and serbs in kosovo after turkey beat serbia in t world basketball championships. those are this hour's fast five headlines for you. a look now at the tribute in light. the september 11th memorial that lights up the night sky where the towers once stood shining every year till dawn on the 12th. it caps off a busy day of remembrance all across this nation and a day of protests, as well. i'm joined live by mike taibi who spent the 11th in lower manhattan. we thank you for that and a good morning to you. >> a lot of people in this country and beyond our shores were worried yesterdayhat this traditionally somber day might be overwhelmed by the angry debate over islam building all summer. but while there were competing protests, the day began andri ended with its primary purpose intact.
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they are by now familiar touchstones of remembrance. moments when he the plane struck and the towers fell. the pealing of the bells, thees reading of the names of those lost. >> james joseph carson junior. >> christopher mikell. >> vice president joe biden was at new yorzk's ground zero. first lady michelle obama and former first lady laura bush in shanksville, pennsylvania and president obama at the pentagon. >> this is a day of remembrance, a day of reflection. and with god's grace, a day of unity and renewal. >> but the day was not without other reminders beyond the defused koran burning threat of the increasingly polarized debate over islam, dueling afternoo protests once against a proposed cultural center an mosque 2 1/2 blocks from ground zero. the other against theti
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anti-muslim seven fueling much of that opposition. the two groups were not only separated by their views of also by several blocks. a good thing because tensions around the issue are high and led to several near scuffles. while speakers among the mosque opponents attacked imam abdul rauf as a terror sympathizer who predicts trouble if his plan is derailed. >> americans do not like to be threatened. >> but if the alleged threat is only imagined and temperatures cool, whatever the fate of the center, some sa there might finally be a useful national conversation about islam. >> i do see a positive outcome, one is the conversation was neve really had, and i think it's been a long time coming. and if in the course of that conversation the best legacy of 9/11 is >> it's a way to say to the world we have neve walked away from our democratic roots. >> roots thatth through r
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e history have sent the bright light of hope to all 0 who could see it. now, as construction of the trade center site has been a piecking up and it has been doig that, one of the key goals for next year, the tenth industry of the attacks is to have the memorial center and the park completed and ready to receive visitors. >> wouldn't that be nice. i hope that ends up getting done in time. in a new interview this morning, the imam leading the effort to build a mosque in new york city says the debate is over its construction and it is stoking anti-muslim feelings in the u.s. imam raub tells us the fear of islam is probably greater now than it was. i'm joined by the reverend eugene rivers, an msnbc analyst. thank you for joining me. >> good morning. you heard in mike's piece right there the head of the cncil on the american islamic relation who's says this debate could have a positive outcome because there is a conversation that needs to be had in the u.s.
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do you agree with that. >> i do agree. it's a conversation long overdue, and i think that somemes out of sometimes the turmoil and tension that we see that we can move foard and perhaps find a different way of addressing the whole concept of how islam and a muslims are plad in the public sphere of america. i do believe that the conversation is very, very important. and i might also add, i'm so happy to see that conversation started months ago in gainesville, florida, where there was an attempt to at least a proposal to burn the koran. the community there had a dialogue and as a result of having that dialogue, they were able to come up wi a very comprehensive way of dealing with that ki formal bigotry. >> reverend rivers, your thoughts. is it a conversation well overdue? is this a debate that is stoking anti-muslim sentiment?
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is it both? >> ipr think it's probably both. in fact, the anti- -- the islah ma phobia has one ofhe indirect coeequences of the islam ma phobia is that it will ovide an opportunity for more reasonable minds and voices to prevail and as mahdi has said and gi us an opportunity to have a rational conversation about islam, its role in society, and what's interesting about this is that the united states in this environment, we may be able to be provide an example for the world about how to engage the issue of faith in the public square. >> okay. but mmahdi, the imam rauf says he believes the fer islam is greater now than in the aftermath of 9/11. do you think that'e?s possible? >> i don't think the fear is greater. the research done by a ndllup poll and pew indicates to the
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contrary. what i do think is the megaphone of those people who try to stoke the fear, those people who have an anti-muslim agenda and those individual who's for political reasons and political opportunism want to sacrifice the muslim community on the altar of political expeddance have a bigger megaphone and bigger way of getting their point out. i believe that point of the aspect of islam ma phobia is greater. there has been an increase as a result of that in terms of the attacks on mosques and attacks on other muslim institutions and things that have nature. but again, i don't believe that from a national standpoint that we've inkrised the amount of islamaphobia we see resonating in the country. i believe it's being stoked more by a certain unsafery individuals who are doing that type of th political purpose or for whatever desire they may have. s, i'm curious,er how do we make this debate over the construction of the mosque
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exclusively constructive and not destructive at all? what can we do? are there steps we can implement? >> yes, and number one, we need to historically put this in some perspective. the same individuals whoalled for the burning of korans, 50 years ago were, burning crosses on the lawns of black people who were then told that they were notne americans. soe need to put this in historical contempt. number two, i believe that this, there's a tempest in the teapot provides an opportunity for reasoning individuals. the media has a role to play in that it should promote responsible only individuals to engage in a discussion that doesn't get into the kind of mudslinging trash that we saw coming out of florida. so that's number two. number three, i believ that the islamic leaders and in particular christian leaders and
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more precisely white evangelical leaders, i'll say a bit about that, need to be engaged in a dialogue that talks about how we in a pluralistic democracy can engage in discussions of hard questions without name calling or and presuming the good will of the folk in the conversationing. >> so here's the good point. i think we're doing number two right here. but last question to you, mahdi. how far away are we from having reasonable discussions at the proper volume? >> i thk we're much closer than we may have anticipated. as a sult of the intensity of this vocal minority that has really been stoking the flames of islam ma phobia in this nation, there have been many people of good will want community as well as within the civic society that want to have this dialogue even more so because the nation's in a
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crisis, not only in terms of islam an phobia employmen t, et cetera. one of the things we have to realize is that when a family's in crisis, we have to turn to each other rathethan turning on each other. i think more people are realizing that and looking forward to that opportunity to be able to help each other in a time of crisis. >> let's hope. mahdi bray, reverend rivers. thanks so much. officials say there were several warning signs in but they weren't enough to stop a double-decker bus driver from slamming into an overpass on a new york suburb there in syracuse. look at the mess there. the crash happened early saturday morning and it mangled the top front of that megabus. four people died and at least 25 were treated for injuries. >> i feltd something hit and then i flew from here to here. then i got stuck between the two seats and then i was unconscious for two minutes. >> the driver, 59-year-old john
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tomaszuky was hospitalized. officials say he made a wrong turn on to a road that may have been unfamiliar to him on the way from philadelphia to toronto. an alabama police officer is recovering after a terrible twist of fate. i was involved in two auto accidents this week first in a neral procession, a car hit his m sending him 50 yards. then as he was transported to the hospital,the ambulance overturned and caught fire. a second ambulance finally brought him to the hospital. corporal brown had emergency surgery. no word on his current condition. that will former russianok y with the good looks is cashing in on her notoriety. and nan chapman was kicked out of the u.s. in july along with nine others after th were exposed as russian agents. she made a splash last month when this video surfaced of her racy photo shoot for a russian magazine. now she says her newab website about to go up live. nina dos santos is in london. good morning.
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anna chapman cannot capitalize on this scandal in the u.s. overseas, she can, right? >> good morning to you. yes, anna chapman has repeatedly said she can't talk about her time in america but that isn't to say she's not allowed to make the most of her looks which it seems as tugh she's she's doing. she recently poses in a racy photo shoot. you saw snippets of the video that came out following that photo shoot. in a further sign that the 28-year-old is looking to cash in oou her newfound celebrity status in russia, she recently told the german magazineder spe spiegel she plans to set up her own website. while chapman proved to be an instant hit with the media following her arrest thanks in part to the pictures she posted of herself on her facebookoe pa, it does seem as though chapman's keenness on such sites as reportedly landed her in hot water once again. following that recent photo
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shoot, chapman is reportedly being sued by the publishers of the magazine for posting the pictures andhat video on her facebook page without their permission. >> so anyonena, give me a sense how she's viewed in russia ovall. there are reportro to se. >> yes, that's right, alex. she's not just a local hero. she's a national hero in her hometown. and also in the rest of the country. it's said she's so famous in russia, that she can'tth go out without wearing sunglasses and a hate because otherwise they'll be recognized. she is popular in political circles, having met the prime minister vladimir putin upon her return to russia in july and had in her hometown, members of the local council there have named her an honorary citizen. what's more, a local newspaper from her birth town has sponsored a song contest in her honor. it seems as though out east, the
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future certainly seems bright for this redheaded beauty. >> it will be fun to follow, i think. na dos santos, thanks so much. in a moment, what is president obama's strategy to help the democrats hold on to congress? we'll talk about it on "msnbc sunday." ever seen anything like it? me neither. it's beneful incredibites. uh-huh! it's just the way you like it-- made with wholesome grains, real beef, even carrots and peas. you love the smaller-size, easy-to-chew kibbles, and i love the carbohydrates for energy and protein for muscles.
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approaching and president obama is digging in. "new york times" columnist maureen dowd calls it his best buzzer beating mode. with recent trips to cleveland l d milwaukee, a news conference on friday and tomorrow he'lbe in virginia. but is it enough to you rescue democrats across the country? let's bring in eleanor clift from news week and kristina bell antonio. good morning, ladies. >> good morning, everybody. >> i'm curious, eleanor, if you think e president today is as good a campaigner as candidate obama was in 2008. >> candidate obama was a blank slate. everybody could project all their hopes and their wishes on
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him. democrats loved him. independents loved him, even some republicans loved him. now he's got a record to defend. and i think we've discovered that he's not really leading a movement. i don't know where all those new voters are. they don't seem to be energized to turn out in this midterm. it looks like the election's going to revert to form with older voters showing up, disgruntled voters showing up, and all of the voters who obama inspired two years ago kind of sitting this one out. maybe he can change that over the next several weeks. but i don't think he can change it enough to turn these midterms into a victory. he can -- he can try to limit the losses and maybe help the democrats hang on to their majority in the house and the senate. >> you're sure going to bet they're going to try to get out the vote here. kristina, define the white house
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strategy through the homestretch here. is there a concrete plan you see emerging or a sense they're just going to throw everything at the wall and see what sticks? >> you're definitely starting to see it this week partially because of the obama's team philosophy. they've had a series of really bad augusts. you saw it in 2007, 2008, last year with all those town halls. and now this year. they believe that the american people start to tune in right about now after labor day talking about the mid terls more and more. and this is the point where they ramp up. part of the strategy is to define minority leader john anboehner as the man who wants be speaker of the house. they're going to continue to hammer him. the dnc has a new ad upn tuesday. to be ing to continue that. it's president obama wants to see it be a defining election. he's going to say the republicans are something and at the democrats are for something else. >> eleanor, take a look at all the distractiodistctions, the p
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islamic center, the massive oil spill in the gulf. how much has this overshadowed what the president wanted to have on his agenda? >> didn't even include the greek debt crisis, which reallye fueld all the discontent about the growing american debt and are we the next greece. yeah, this is a distraction because the president is not able to keep his message and the media'sss message on job creati. so the voters think,do well, he doesn't care enough. i think he's now found his voice and he's got some proposals out there that actually the republicans should suort for job creation. if they cdon't, he can paint tm as obstruction gists. maybe after the election some of these proposals could pass and both parties could get down to responsible given governing because the country really is in a crisis. >> maybe, right? kristina, here's the question. if republicans do win the house, what's the biggest concern there? is the administration worried about being bogged down or
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drowned by the gop-driven investthigations? >> i think that's certainly a concern. is another thing political element here. you've heard more and more talk about shut down government, perhaps by trying to defund things like health care reform, but also just not passing a budget and we saw how that went in the '90s and o i think the obama white house recognizes if that happens, that gives them something to campaign against. so you're going to hear more and more about that as atwell. what would the gop be doing in 2011 if they do win. >> christina and eleanor, thank you so much. >> thank you. it's a matter of degrees, college enrollment has been rising during these tough times. there are new questions about the benefits of tting that degree. would you be better off just getting a job? that's next on "msnbc sunday." [ woman ] nine iron, it's almost tee-time...
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. good news for college grads, starting salaries that were on the decline appear to be leveling off. according it a study released by the national association of colleges and employers, the average starting salary for 2010
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grads dipped.7%ye compared with the year before. last year the avera pay down 1.2% for 2009 grads. believe it or not, some experts are advocating high school students bypass higher education and not go to college. a new article in t"the washingtn post" says some ared calling college a badin investment. try telling that to all the parents forking over asmuch as $200,000 in tuition and other expenses for their kids' higher education. joining me is james, the managing director of formula capital. good morning. >> hi, alex. >> you know this article caught my eye. you always hear about education, higher education, what you need to be successful and always believed that as so and you're telling people not to go to college? are you doing that or not? >> well, i am doing that because i thin ck colleges and college presidents have taken advantage of the situation. i mean, college tuitions and costs are up maybe five times as they were 20, 30 years ago and i
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think that's grossly e unfair t many of the parents in this environment who have to afford college and many of the kids. i think it does them a disservice to graduate with so much debt. the size of the debt that a student graduates with now is higher than ever. >> okay. let's -- >> why be burdened with that at a young age. >> i want to look beyond the economics here. you say parents have been fooled into thinking twahere's no othe way for their kids to get the job and you learn critical thinking or make social connections and you basically say college is overrated. >> well look, it doesn't cost $200,000 to teach my kid thous think or get them to have social connections. you can give your kids 10, $20,000, have them start one, two, three businesses, doesn't matter if they succeed or fail, not he every kid is an entrepreneur, giving them that to learn how to think about how to deal with society or society around them, this is extremely valuable. you don't need a college
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education to do that. >> okay. >> they want to go to college later let them when they know the value of money. >> how do they go about getting what they need to have, critical thinking, social connections asi aside, critical thinking what do you suggest they do to prepare for that? >> again, how many college students are really learning critical thinking in college. think about -- at college. i don't think they were spending all day long reading the great text, philosophy and learning critical thinking. there's lots of way to learn, travel, start a business, go to the library and read. >> traveling, starting a business, they need money to do that. >> okay. but a lot less money than going to college. b you could start a business now for almost nothing. there's so many opportunities to build an internet business or create product. the world is flattening all over the place, bringing prices down to start a business. >> was this your own path? did this work for yo >> no.
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i have many regrets about the time i spent college and graduate school. >> oh. okay. well, i'm sorry for that. i still am a huge advocate of education. i can't go any other way but i will consider what you said, james. thank you very much. >> it's mostly about the. [ no audio ] >> compared to inflation even compared to the pralice of heal care. >> james, thanks. for more than a year in iran may be released in the next couple days, but what about her jailed husband, that is ahead on "msnbc sunday." ♪ yes! ♪ look, they fit! oh my gosh, are those the jeans from last year? how'd you do it? eating right...whole grain. [ female announcer ] people who eat more whole grain tend to have healthier body weights. multigrain cheerios has five whole grains and 110 lightly sweetened calories. more grains. less you! multigrain cheerios.
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